Questions Answered!

  • Tutela
  • 07 Mar, 2020

By: Tutela Test Prep

Updated: March 6, 2020

Alma Matters is excited to collaborate with Tutela Test Prep to provide Answers to Questions that students have regarding Standardized Test Preparation. Tutela has been providing Test Prep Assistance to college-bound students with head turning results. According to Ashish Kumar of Tutela Test Prep, "Tutela provides a trustworthy guardianship for SAT, ACT, SAT Subject Tests, AP, IGCSE, and IB aspirants to realise their academic dreams with absolute ease."

We have now made this Test Prep expertise accessible to our students. Every week we will pick questions posed on our Forum by students and parents, and Tutela Test Prep will provide the answers. Good Luck!


Q: What things predict high scores in SAT/ACT?

: PSAT: Students must take their PSAT exam in their 9th grade. Though PSAT is not a qualifier for getting admission into a college, ideally, scoring more than 1450/1520 is considered a good score and indicates that students can aim for a 1480+ on their SAT. PSAT can help students combat their fear of taking the SAT and give them a strong kickstart.

Inculcating essential skills such as reading skills, analytical skills, critical reasoning, etc. are the core skills required for the SAT. If a student has a natural flare for these skills, then acing the SAT will not be a hurdle.

Mental preparedness: The threshold of taking rigour of the SAT preparation journey: SAT requires dedication and continuous hard work. If a student is willing to give his or her all, then the SAT journey will surely be fruitful

No. of SAT practice tests one takes: Taking as many practice tests as possible. One should aim to take a minimum of 10 practice tests before the SAT. The scores in the practice tests are real indicators of your preparedness for the exam. One can expect the actual SAT score to lie in the range of the practice test scores. Hence, a student needs to focus on the SAT practice tests and ensure to treat them with utmost seriousness.

Proper guidance: Balancing school academics with SAT preparation can render a student overwhelmed. In order to avoid compromising on any of the exams, SAT aspirants might need external help. The role of an experienced guide throughout the SAT journey can guarantee a good score as the student will have clarity and will be able to work in a smart way.


Tailoring the strategy of ACT test-prep: It is very important to understand the structure of the ACT and draft a study plan. Students should take enough practice tests, solve questions, review their mistakes, maintain an error log and get comfortable with reading long passages on computer/laptop. This will ensure that students are comfortable with the actual test pattern. 

Inculcating essential skills such as time management skills, skim reading, analytical skills, application of various grammar and math rules can guarantee a good score on the ACT.

Avoiding unreliable practice resources: Students must take their practice tests from a credible source such as ACT official practice tests and other trusted sources to avoid any kind of gap in the concepts.

Time and effort devoted: Taking the time and putting forth a diligent effort in the preparation makes the process of ACT test-taking easy. Students should remember that ACT is more about smart work than hard work. Doing ample tests with little or no score improvement is a fruitless effort. A student should ensure a proactive approach towards the preparation and work towards score improvement. 

Giving every ACT section equal importance: Revise each section diligently and take sectional tests(5 from every section) and create an error log to adopt a streamlined approach towards score improvement. Do not have any preconceived notions about any particular section. Every section is scoring and can be worked upon in order to get an optimum score.

Taking online practise tests (10-15 online practice tests): Students must undergo rigorous test-taking two weeks before the exam. Getting a score of 32+ in practice tests is a good indicator that one might end up scoring high in the actual test. After each test, the tests should be thoroughly reviewed and an error log should be devised

Mental preparedness: The threshold of taking rigour of the ACT preparation journey should be high from the beginning. ACT requires consistent practice and smart-work. If a student is willing to give his or her all, then the ACT journey will surely be fruitful.

Q: If one is weak in Math, which is a better test to take - SAT or ACT?

A: The SAT and ACT are both standardized tests and hold equal importance. No one test has a higher preference for the other. Therefore, a candidate stands an equal chance of getting admission into a college based on his/her SAT or ACT score.

However, the prominent point is to choose the right exam for you. Be it SAT or ACT. There's a preconceived notion among students that the SAT is better than ACT. Notwithstanding the notion candidates have, one should focus more on self-introspection and figure out his area of interest.
Once this part of self-exploration is done you can choose which test you want to go for. Most of the job is yours to find your area of interest. If you're not sure, you can take the SAT vs. ACT diagnostic test which will help you to a greater extent. This test will help you in solving your dilemma and get rid of it.

In case specifically Math subject is your deciding factor to take up SAT or ACT, then there are other factors that need to be considered.

  • The ACT is time-based and demands accuracy. It is purely rhetorical.
  • On the other hand, the SAT is more on the analytical side and requires in-depth knowledge.
  • The content part in the ACT is more and shallow knowledge will work, whereas in SAT the content isn't vast hence in-depth knowledge is needed.
  • Conceptual clarity is required in both the tests.

To be precise, ACT has easier maths and calculators are permitted. Hence, if your concepts are clear and you are prone to silly calculation mistakes then ACT is for you. To know more you can check out the Tutela blog on ACT vs. SAT.


Q: If I am using Khan Academy, should I still attend SAT-prep classes?

A: SAT-prep classes will anytime be preferred to self-studying. Not that it means you cannot self-study SAT, it just means you don't have to take the pain to find ways to study.

Moreover, besides SAT, a candidate has a lot on his/her plate and self-studying only adds up to a lot of headaches. Taking prep classes have a lot of benefits, if we squarely tell you then everything is served in your plate you just have to take the pain to have it.

Having a competitive environment to study in, is enough a trigger for you to score better. There will be no need to cajole you into studying as your progress will be constantly monitored and your mentors will leave no stone unturned to help you score higher than the cut-offs. Furthermore, the institutes are aware of the past trends of the questions, twists in the questions and other tricks. Therefore, it's better to seek external guidance which will help you in adding quality and smartness to your work. To know more about SAT click on the link.

A: SAT requires 3-4 months of extensive preparation if you want to ace your SAT exam. An Indian aspirant can take the SAT 4 times a year and no one wants to take the exam that many times. So, why not prepare for it and crack it in one shot?

For the last-minute preparation, you are required to stick to your schedule and follow it dedicatedly. You can't afford to waste any minute but that doesn't mean you cannot take out time to rejuvenate yourself. We have a panacea that will help you in the last month before the exam.

For more tips, you can check out the Tutela blog .

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